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The Rose Villa, McHenry, IL
The Rose Villa
Pistakee Bay was bustling with visitors on summer days in the early 1900s. Sailboats would float over the bay, their enormous white sails bulging as the wind pushed them across the gleaming water. Pistakee Bay was the summer playground for wealthy Chicago merchants and politicians, who stayed at the many resorts on the riverfront or constructed their own, often luxurious summer houses.
Waldron Construction, Kitchen & Bath is owned and operated by Joe and Tasha Waldron. Waldron Construction has Over 75+ Years Combined Staff Experience and a large knowledge base related to building and remodeling homes as well as overseeing commercial projects. We recognize that our largest asset is our team.
Joe and Tasha
The Rose Villa, a three-story palace on the edge of Pistakee Bay, was the most spectacular of these summer mansions. The mansion, which was built of white McHenry fake stone and included 32 rooms, eight fireplaces, eight baths, and a dance space on the third floor, was completed in 1912.
George Sayer, a Chicago businessman, and his wife Rose lived there. Sayer owned a butcher supply firm and a chemical company, making him the wealthiest man on the bay.
Sayer had a large waterfront estate with a vast rose garden, Rose’s favorite flower, and an animal refuge on the grounds, Deer Park. Because there were no access routes at the time, his exotic creatures, particularly birds, were frequently carried to McHenry by train and then transported to the bay by boat.
The animal park also had two sacred cattle from India, according to the Sayer family’s history. Sayer’s holdings also comprised five farms, which employed a large number of people in the area.
Last August, if you were cruising around the bay on a gorgeous summer night, you would have heard the strains of a live string quartet coming from the Rose Villa as a lawn party, reminiscent of old-fashioned receptions, commemorated the house’s 100th anniversary.
Croquet and badminton games were played on the lawn in the same way they would have been in the 1900s. The food offered mirrored the tastes of the decade in which the house was built. The guest list included Sayer and Skidmore descendants, as well as a prior owner of the mansion. Some guests arrived by boat, much as they did in the early days, though they tended to be motorboats rather than sailboats.
According to the owners, “This is a great home and is shared with family and close friends. We feel we are just the caretakers of the legacy of the Rose Villa for the next generation.”
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Testimonials From Our Satisfied Customers
We started off not knowing what we wanted, but knew we needed a new kitchen and flooring for most of our first floor, which was overwhelming to us. We worked with Liz to help us design what we wanted. She was fabulous and patient with us. Timelines were met and the crew who worked with us ended up feeling like part of the family. When faced with some pretty big “snags,” which were of no fault of Waldron Construction, Joe was professional, pushed to make things right, and kept his word; The team went above and beyond and did excellent work.
Such a great team of professionals. We had our kitchen remodeled and Waldron Construction was very helpful and thorough. A little future advice for anyone considering a major remodel is to expect delays and the need to make changes due to supply availability or unforeseen issues. Joe Waldron treats you with great respect and is very driven to make sure you are very satisfied and happy with your remodel. Some may feel the expense is too high…but you do get what you pay for. Thank you for a very beautiful kitchen, Nancy and Gary
We just completed our dream kitchen remodel with Waldron Construction. We are extremely pleased with the results. Angie helped us through the design and was always a text/phone call away. The trades were excellent and were great to work with. Of course there were hiccups in the process but nothing that couldn’t be worked out. Having the schedule in front of us daily through builder trend was great too. Joe was very responsive whenever we had questions or concerns. We would recommend Waldron for your next home improvement project..